Ant Jail

Earlier in the year I noticed some behavior in my bee’s that I see as particularly beneficial. When I select for breeding queens and genetic propagation there are several things that come into play. This is one of those things.Photo Jun 10, 5 49 19 PM

Photo Jun 10, 5 49 22 PM

The ants found a way in and the bees used propolis to keep the ants from entering the hive any further. I have raised a few queens from this colony already. They are the three nuc’s I have in my home apiary. I have never overwintered nuc’s before so we’ll see how it goes. There are many other things to consider when selecting breeding stock. I am starting to learn what I like and don’t like about certain bee’s. I have had queens come back after mating to find that the aren’t what I had hoped them to be. I’ve also had queen from the same run that went on to be breeders. This year I bought 4 queens from a local breeder who’s program consist of buying breeder queens from well known sources and raising queens from them all year. I really like that approach accept it removes the survivability aspect. When I purchase queens like this I like to let them overwinter and raise queens off of the remaining stock. The strong genetics that survive will hopefully be passed on through the daughters. Open mating in my yards should also bring hopefully feral genetics into the gene pool.  I’m also doing some research as to what constitutes VSH genetics. This is not an overnight research process. Hopefully I’ll be able to make heads or tails of it. Survivors and those that thrive are my main goals .

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